More than 8,000 learn new skills in lifelong learning initiative

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More than 8,000 people in Latvia have participated in a EU-sponsored lifelong learning scheme, reports LTV September 11.

The courses are organized by Latvia's State Education Development Agency. 90% of the cost is shouldered by the EU with a total of €25 million allotted. In consequence, courses cost just €30 to €170 for the individual participants. 

More than half of the participants are aged 25 - 44, more than a third are aged 45 to 56, and 10% are aged 56 and above. 

Participants are most interested in IT & communication (2,313 participants); construction (2,283); as well as transport and logistics (1,381); forestry (724); and tourism & catering (418). 

Nevertheless SEB economist Dainis Gašpuitis criticized the scheme.

"The gains are rather theoretical. There are very many suspect courses on offer," he said.

Gašpuitis said that businesses should be more involved in the initiative and people under 30 should be excluded, so that the initiative becomes more profitable.

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